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Overall Rating

Awesome: 3.28%
Worth A Look: 18.03%
Average: 29.51%
Pretty Bad32.79%
Total Crap: 16.39%

5 reviews, 31 user ratings

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Glass House, The (2001)
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by EricDSnider

"Get it? The house has lots of glass, and the family's NAME is Glass!"
3 stars

"The Glass House" begins with our teen-age protagonist, Ruby Baker (Leelee Sobieski), watching a lame slasher flick called "Prom Nightmare." She is bored by its predictability, adherence to its genre and general lack of originality.

All this does is open the door for film critics to observe that "The Glass House" is not much better. Honestly, why do movies do this to us? Never include a bad movie in your movie unless you're sure your movie is way better.

"The Glass House" is not a bad movie, but by no means is it a very good one, either. It is somewhat atmospheric, mildly suspenseful and occasionally scary. No movie ever tried harder to accomplish something so mediocre.

Ruby and her 12-year-old brother Rhett (Trevor Morgan) are two upper-middle-class kids whose parents are killed in a car accident. As per the folks' request, they go to live in Malibu with the Glasses, Terry (Stellan Skarsgard) and Erin (Diane Lane), wealthy people with a breathtaking house and a taste for the high life. The Glasses were friends of the Bakers' years ago, but have not been very close lately.

Things seem OK, but a little askew. Ruby and Rhett have to share a bedroom, for example, and the Glasses have put them in public school instead of continuing them in private school. Terry is more than a little creepy, too, with his advances toward Ruby.

It turns out the Glasses aren't quite as well-off as they used to be, with debts amassing quickly and the bank accounts dwindling. Could Ruby and Rhett's huge trust fund be a factor in all this?

This is the third movie I have seen this year in which studying Shakespeare in English class leads a character to realize something's afoot in his own life. This is slightly better than having a psychic come along and tell them what's up (see "Jeepers Creepers"). And it's not usually this obvious: This time, they're studying "Hamlet." Perhaps the filmmakers are counting on today's culturally illiterate viewers not to know the plot of this play, where Hamlet's father was killed by the man who took his place. I've seen "Hamlet," though, so I wasn't fooled. I actually jotted my incredulity in my notes: "Surely they are not telegraphing this plot twist this early in the film!" Alas, they were.

Director Daniel Sackheim keeps the pace up, anyway, playing up every possible element of tension, whether it makes sense or not. (Terry's leering at Ruby is never really motivated or explained; it's just something creepy to have happen.) The screenplay, by Wesley Strick, neither forges new ground nor treads too heavily upon the old.

It all just sort of carries on in a generally agreeable fashion. It's not a very convincing movie, but it is watchable.

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originally posted: 09/17/01 12:53:27
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User Comments

9/14/17 morris campbell IT SUCKS 1 stars
2/20/11 Ark Leelee is hot, movie somehow captures a sense of dread! 3 stars
7/20/08 Shaun Wallner This is the kind of movie you fall asleep too. 1 stars
2/14/07 Sleez Boy Probably the worst crap I've seen, doesn't accomplish anything, but HATE for this films! >{ 1 stars
12/03/06 David Pollastrini Leelee Sobieski is hot! 5 stars
7/29/05 Nobody Dark, creepy, paranoid. I was expecting a better ending, but it is pretty suspenseful 3 stars
6/18/05 Indrid Cold Leelee looks like ayoung Helen Hunt, which is the most interesting thing about this movie. 2 stars
6/05/05 Joe This movie makes you wanna hate your mother 1 stars
3/11/05 Danielle R. A thoroughly entertaining thriller. Excellent art direction. 5 stars
11/15/04 Robert It sucks! 1 stars
2/05/04 NewYork I enjoyed it very much 4 stars
2/01/04 Lindsay IT'S GREAT 4 stars
10/01/03 Samuel Justus Suspenseful! Damn! It would suck if this ever happened to someone! 4 stars
9/05/03 Natalie Stonecipher Heroine's a brat; Skarsgård too nice to hate for too much of movie. Average 3 stars
9/05/03 Jin So outrageous, depressing, and just wretched 1 stars
8/25/03 Carrie Kohl Anything like subliminable, OthersFan? What dat you say, Darlene?!? 4 stars
6/25/03 TheOthersFan this does fall under the genre of unintentionable-sick-sense-of-humor comedies, right? 1 stars
1/05/03 Goofy Maxwell Like watching retarded fish trying to keep their heads above water. 1 stars
10/11/02 SiliconHero said this was a thriller? Coulda fooled me! 2 stars
8/14/02 palaboy101 good movie... 'nuff said. 4 stars
5/16/02 Darlene Groetz The movie where Leelee Sobieski became a zombie of the tragic wands. 2 stars
2/23/02 Unanon Oooooh! Spooky! <----- Note sarcasm. 2 stars
2/17/02 John Lyons Would have been watchable if Lelee had gotten naked. 2 stars
2/04/02 Natalie Stonecipher Heroine's a brat; Skarsg@rd too nice to hate for too much of movie 3 stars
1/13/02 Andrew Carden Predictible, but Still Watchaable Teen Thriller. 3 stars
1/08/02 greensweater Hilarious! 1 stars
11/24/01 Roy Smith Best appreciated with a box of kleenex, and I don't mean for crying. 3 stars
10/15/01 Schmidty72 Was promising but Sobieski's character is just not likable. 2 stars
10/07/01 KCMichelle My grandmother's funeral was less predictable. 1 stars
9/18/01 FriscoJohn Average at BEST 2 stars
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  14-Sep-2001 (PG-13)


  18-Oct-2001 (M)

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